Stanbridge College Students Awarded Campus Compact Fellowship for Mentoring Young Adults with Intellectual Disabilities

Two of Stanbridge College’s Master of Science in Occupational Therapy (OT) graduate students were designated exclusive student fellowships as a part of the California Campus Compact’s Community Engagement Student Fellowship (CESF). The fellowship is a four-month program whose intended design is to elevate promising students, encourage community engagement, and provide service learning opportunities. Since then, seven additional Stanbridge College students have been named to the CESF, respectively.

OT graduate students, Ms. Lauren Schneider and Ms. Jennifer Chin, were named to the Spring 2016 CESF. As student fellows, Ms. Schneider and Ms. Chin strengthened Stanbridge College’s partnership with Life College teaching life skills classes to young adults with autism, fragile X syndrome, and brain injuries.

“My experience as a California Campus Compact Community Engagement Student Fellow has been absolutely amazing,” says Ms. Lauren Schneider. “I learned how to step out of my comfort zone and that I am capable of doing more than I thought I was—just like how I tell the Life College students they are capable of doing more than they think.”

Phased out of the public school system, many of these intellectually disabled young adults lack the treatment and services necessary for them to gain a comprehensive education and enter the workforce. Life College is an avenue of higher education, offering a transitional program to help promote independent living and employment for these young adults. The student fellows facilitated access to Stanbridge College’s world-class Therapy and Simulation Labs, providing Life College students with a specially designed teaching curriculum to tailor-fit their needs.

During their fellowship, Ms. Schneider and Ms. Chin instructed classes on basic cooking and good nutrition, how to properly press their own clothes, and conducted mock job interviews to instill confidence. The lessons taught by the OT graduate students aimed to help Life College students successfully transition to working and living on their own, without the full-time assistance of family members or specialists.

Instructing Life College students both in class and during one-on-one lessons gave both Ms. Schneider and Ms. Chin a real-world experience using techniques and skills they will utilize with future clients.

“I’ve learned that I can make a difference in an individual’s life,” says Ms. Chin. “As an Occupational Therapy student and a future OT, this experience impacts my future directly because it’s exactly what I would be doing to help individuals like the Life College students.”

“The Campus Compact Community Engagement Student Fellowship has proven to be an enriching experience for the students of Stanbridge College,” stated the Stanbridge College Occupational Therapy Program Director, Dr. Janis Davis. “Their service to others provides them with opportunities to work alongside other professionals both in and outside the field of occupational therapy and allows them to use skills learned in the classroom. It has truly given them a look into the inner workings and needs of communities and of their future careers.”

Stanbridge College continues to build and improve further partnerships including the Downtown Dog Rescue, the Wounded American Veterans Experience Scuba (WAVES) project, and the Goodwill Center of Orange County Fitness and Technology Center among others. Stanbridge College has been honored to receive the 2016 Gold Award for Excellence in Community Service from The California Association of Private Postsecondary Schools (CAPPS) for extending its students quality higher education while simultaneously assisting the local community.

Ms. Schneider and Ms. Chin’s partnership with Life College continues as a current on-campus initiative at Stanbridge College.

To learn more about the programs at Stanbridge College and its degree programs, please visit For more information regarding our Master of Science in Occupational Therapy program, visit here.

To learn more about Life College, visit their website.

To read up on the California Campus Compact and its fellowship, visit here.